Reel Shorts | Get Him to the Greek

4 06 2010

This review first appeared in Jet Magazine.com. To read this review at its original source, click here.

Diddy’s Peformace Far From “Greek” Tragedy!
Since 2004, nobody has produced as many laugh-out-loud on-screen moments as comic impresario Judd Apatow. “Get Him to the Greek” once again employs all of his now familiar trademarks — including a nerdy lead character who discovers his calling — mixed in with tons of sometimes painful laughs.

Instead of a sequel to his popular 2008 island comedy “Forgetting Sarah Marshall,” Apatow and director Nicholas Stoller create a spin-off featuring the vapid, horny British rocker Aldous Snow (Russell Brand) of the band Infant Sorrow. Since we last saw Snow, his career has gone into decline, fueled largely by his tasteless and offensive single, African Child, as well as his high-profile failed relationship with airhead, pop-star girlfriend Jackie Q (Rose Byrne), which has left the boozing, insecure bad boy in a funk.

But Snow is offered salvation when a bold suggestion by ambitious record rep Aaron Green (Jonah Hill) convinces Green’s outrageously animated boss Sergio (Sean “Diddy” Combs) to stage a 10-year reunion concert featuring the former frontman. The catch: Green has 72 hours to get Snow from London, bring him to New York and on to the Greek Theater in Los Angeles for the show.

In no time, Green is overwhelmed and over-matched by the cynical, partying rocker. Taking “Sex, Drugs and Rock ‘n’ Roll” to a whole other level, Snow turns his young charge upside down and inside out — plying him with combinations of different drugs, alcohol and plenty of available women. Green is even introduced, with humorous results, to a new drug, “the Jeffrey,” which gets you high, takes you down …and then gets you even higher!

If Green isn’t occupied enough with his dream assignment and maniacal boss, he also has to juggle his relationship with girlfriend Daphne (Mad Men’s Elisabeth Moss), who wants to move them to Seattle for her medical career. Upset that Green is displaying “rock star behavior,” she concocts a payback that is painfully funny but typically “Apatow-ian.”

Hill, who was hysterical in “Superbad,” is serviceable here, largely playing the straight man to the quirky Brand. Unfortunately for Hill, he is overwhelmed by not one but two actors in Brand and Combs, who gives his funniest performance to date. Playing a caricature of himself from his days at Bad Boy Records, Combs nearly steals the film with his infectious performance. His Sergio is an aggressive, combative, loud family man. For those who will complain that Combs was literally playing himself, others haven’t always fared as well in similar situations (think Mariah Carey in “Glitter”).

The only hole in the plot is that it would have been nice if screenwriter Stoller could have created a backstory tying Hill’s character to “Sarah Marshall” since both he and Brand appeared in that film. While many current comedies fail to balance humorous and gross elements, for the most part Apatow gets it right. From “The 40-Year Old Virgin” to “Pineapple Express,” Apatow’s funny pulse remains relevant and strong.

After a summer of over-hyped disappointments, “Get Him to the Greek” finally delivers. No “Jeffrey” required.

Grade: B

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2 responses

14 06 2010
MsOfficer

Haven’t seen this one yet. But speaking of Diddy, how do you feel about this?

http://msofficer.com/2010/06/12/top-5-songs-of-the-week-67/

http://twitter.com/msofficer

20 03 2011
CMrok93

Raunchy, but plenty of funny dialogue with some surprising emotional weight. Who knew P. Diddy was so hilarious?! Just wish I had something better since a lot of this comedy is just based around one dirty situation, after another. Good review, check out mine when you can!

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